Born as a shounen-ai manga in 2013 by Kizu Natsuki's skilled pen, Given gained so much popularity that it got an anime adaptation for the current season. Given is a touching story revolving around a group of friends joined together by a common passion for playing rock music. The story starts off with Uenoyama meeting Mafuyu while he was holding a broken guitar. As the two of them get to know each other, Uenoyama eventually will start teaching Mafuyu the basics of the guitar, but it's when he listens to Mafuyu's singing that Uenoyama wants the boy to join the band. Mafuyu's past is a difficult one, though, so he will find a way to forgive himself through music. Uenoyama, on the other hand, will realize very soon how the friendship with Mafuyu is gradually turning to something deeper. But can it be love? And how should he deal with the fact that Mafuyu is a boy, as well? The older members of the band will be there to help Uenoyama understand that love can overcome every hardship, when reciprocated.
Similar anime to Given
1. Doukyuusei -Classmates-
- Episodes: 1
- Aired: Feb 2016
Rihito Sajou is an honor student, while Hikaru Kusakabe is a guitar player. The two of them are classmates, and their personalities are very different: while Sajou is quiet and serious, Kusakabe is straightforward and hotheaded, plus he has a lot of girls fawning over him. While preparing for the chorus festival, Sajou and Kusakabe start practicing together, and something happens: they begin harboring feelings for each other, but things aren't as easy as they seem...
Doukyuusei and Given are both shounen-ai stories, in which a high school romance between two boys starts thanks to music. Sajou and Kusakabe, exactly like Uenoyama and Mafuyu begin a journey of growth and self-discovery, while coming to know what it means to love someone, and face the past. If you are enjoying Given, Doukyuusei will be your cup of tea!
2. Piano no Mori (Piano Forest)
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: Apr 2018 – Jul 2018
Kai Ichinose lives in a run-down neighborhood situated near the forest and is the son of a prostitute. Shuuei Amamiya, on the contrary, was born and raised in a prestigious family of pianists. In spite of their different upbringings, these two boys share an unconditional love for the piano. Their passion for music will lead their paths to cross, and let an extraordinary friendship bloom...
Piano no Mori is a seinen anime, that shares with Given the most important traits. Firstly, the deep friendship blooming between two male characters, joined together by their passion for music; secondly, the characters' desire to master their abilities in order to honor someone important to them. If you like music, and touching stories, you're bound to like both these shows.
Piano no Mori PV
3. Carole & Tuesday
- Episodes: 24
- Aired: Apr 2019 – ongoing
Carole is a girl living in Alba City, working part-time while trying to become a musician. Tuesday is a girl from a wealthy family, who dreams to become a musician, as well. While Carole has the constant feeling that something is missing, Tuesday feels like nobody understands her. Their paths will cross, and the fated meeting will lead both of them to start thinking that they can make it...
Exactly like Given, Carole & Tuesday is a slow-paced show, which is character-driven. Both the main characters in Given and Carole & Tuesday want to grow as persons, even though they have a long way to go. They want to realize their dream of playing music, as well, and therefore they will show their determination, and obstinacy. If you wish to watch an anime like Given, but with female protagonists, pick Carole & Tuesday!
Carole & Tuesday PV
Any Anime Like Given ?
4. Sakamichi no Apollon (Kids on the Slope)
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: Apr 2012 – Jun 2012
It's the summer of 1966, and Kaoru Nishimi moves to Sasebo, in Kyushu. He has been moving from place to place since his childhood, so he has never really managed to make friends. As a result, he became an introvert. When he meets Sentarou Kawabuki, a “delinquent” attending the same class as Kaoru, his life changes for good. Kawabuki introduces Kaoru – who is a pianist – to jazz music, and they will go through their teenage years together.
Sakamichi no Apollon is a josei anime, and it shares with Given the same good vibes. In fact, both these shows revolve around two male protagonists becoming friends, and sharing a passion for music. Exactly like Uenoyama with Mafuyu, Kawabuki will introduce Kaoru to jazz music, and have him join his band. Both these shows are coming-of-age stories, touching the viewers deeply. Pick Sakamichi no Apollon if you want to enjoy a “vintage” version of Given!
Kids on the Slope Trailer
5. Kono Oto Tomare! (Kono Oto Tomare!: Sounds of Life)
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: Apr 2019 – Jun 2019
Takezou Kurata is part of the Koto club of his high school, but after the graduation of the senior members, the club risks being disbanded. As the last member, Takezou needs to do all he can to find people willing to join the club. Of course, the task will be very challenging, as no one in the school seems interested in the Koto club. The situation is bound to change, though; in fact, a new student barges into the club room, and demands to join the club!
Like Given, Kono Oto Tomare! portrays high school students willing to learn a new instrument, and play music. Kono Oto Tomare! is a shounen anime, trying to bring meaning to music, and that's exactly what happens with Given, as well. In both these shows, we have two teenage boys whose fated encounter will be the starting point of each other's growth, as persons, and musicians. Give Kono Oto Tomare! a try, if you like Given: it won't fail you.
Kono oto Tomare! PV
6. Bakumatsu Rock (Samurai Jam -Bakumatsu Rock-)
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: Jul 2014 – Sep 2014
Bakumatsu Rock, as the title suggests, takes place in the Bakumatsu era. If that era was characterized by the Shinsengumi, and those opposing the Tokugawa Shogunate, in Bakumatsu Rock the Tokugawa Shogunate is trying to brainwash Japan, by using songs called “Heaven's Songs”. Every other kind of music is banned, so if Sakamoto Ryouma and his friends wish to play rock, they are automatically rebels to be erased.
By the premises, we know that there doesn't seem to be any connection between Bakumatsu Rock and Given. Yet, we are positive that if you liked one, you'll like the other, as well. Firstly, because both these shows revolve around rock music, and guys willing to play no matter what; secondly, because in both these shows the music becomes a means to achieve something greater. If you like rock music, you should totally give Bakumatsu Rock a chance!
Bakumatsu Rock PV
With Bakumatsu Rock, our list of six anime like Given comes to an end. We tried to pick those shows sharing with it the most important traits. As a consequence, we chose shounen-ai anime, or those in which music becomes the very cornerstone of the entire story. We really wished we could have picked more than six, because other popular shows really deserved a mention here, like Beck, or Gravitation, but having to choose, this is our final list.
Given is a slow-paced, character-driven show, and that's what makes it all the more enjoyable. Most of these anime share this peculiarity with Given, so the same good vibes are guaranteed. Now please, don't hesitate to leave a comment below. See you next time!